Toro’s uranium mine will struggle financially: report

An economist has warned that Western Australia’s first proposed uranium mine may struggle to reach development.

An economist has warned that Western Australia’s first proposed uranium mine may struggle to reach development.

The claims are made in a report commissioned by Greens senator Scott Ludlam into the economic viability of Toro Energy’s proposed Wiluna project.

The study says that the project’s profitability relies on a number of sensitive issues, ABC reported.

Roderick Campbell, the paper’s author, says the company may struggle to make the project viable.

"The Wiluna project sits very high on the cost curve of global uranium projects," he said.

"It's difficult to see why any of the major uranium players would invest in this project when there's a lot of cheaper projects out there."

In a statement, Toro said the Wiluna project had won Federal Government approval after a rigorous three and a half year assessment.

It said there is significant market interest from international energy companies and global resource investors.

However, Ludlam claims the project will only manage to be remain viable if Toro avoid clean-up costs.

He also said the company had failed to submit a mine closure plan, which would add to the project’s financial burden.

Toro have previously said if financing arrangements went to plan the mine would be in production by the end of 2015.

The $269 million Wiluna mine, is set to become Western Australia's first uranium mine.

It will process 1.3 million tonnes of ore annually, and produce around 820 tonnes of uranium oxide concentrate.

Under Toro’s plans uranium oxide will be transported from Wiluna through the outskirts of Kalgoorlie and over the border into South Australia.

Mine officials say the project will have a 14 year life and regulators say the development will be heavily controlled.

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